life: an update

I had a major life crisis two weeks ago and am only just starting to feel “normal” again. I’m not ready to talk about it (because it’s a rather loaded subject and I’m not interested in opening myself up to trolls), but I will say that I’m fine and getting better and my mental health is much more stable than it was at the time. I had planned on posting lofty July goals, but now I’m just looking forward to getting any writing done, getting back to exercising after a two week break, and focusing on improving my mental state. It’s been difficult, but such is life and I had support from the ones I love. And Harry Potter. I’ve read and watched a lot of Harry Potter.

That’s that.

In better news, my promotion file is DONE. I just printed and added the last of the letters I was waiting on, checked my contents, and made sure it looks neat and tidy. Tomorrow, I ship it off to the other campus and sit back to wait. Until February.

This shows more details than I normally share, but I’m a public entity and google-able, so… nothing you couldn’t find with a quick search. *shrug*

Wish me luck.

Video tomorrow (just an update on shoes I reviewed a few months ago), and *fingers crossed* a more regular blog and video schedule for future posts.

life: work. time. pcos.

Hello. Long time. Yeah, that happened. All schedules out the window; my head is awhirl with deadlines and documents, and no space for all the rest. Still working on promotion, still gathering evidence and examples. My NaNo project is on a slow roll, but progressing in between all the rest. Meanwhile, my home is a mess and my financial fast is not so fast. With all that’s happening, side goals have taken a step back.

In other news, I most likely have some form of PCOS, but my appointment was rescheduled just as I was driving to the office… so the official diagnosis will have to wait. I suspected. I have several of the symptoms, and my weight has been settling in odd places (odd for me). I want a diagnosis, but I don’t want to take hormones or metformin (for reasons I won’t go into, but it involves dependence, band-aid fixes, and other health issues that won’t jive with the treatment). I’m researching all I can, tracking my fertility (no babies! I want nothing to do with that!), and looking into medical research on supplements and other types of nutritional support (library with med school database access = librarian on the hunt!). Just received my latest order from Vitacost and a book from amazon, so it’s a sort of PCOS-inspired haul.

And my book arrived too! #pcosdiet #pcos #research

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I’m going to try this, look into other books for ideas, and rely on the Whole30/paleo as the basis for my eating habits. I seem to do well on a paleo-inspired diet, though I’ve not been the best at maintaining a strict protocol in recent months.

It may remain quiet around here, but feel free to follow on the insta if you want to check in or say hi 🙂

life: what have I done?

It’s never a “good” time to apply for promotion… not when it’s academic and requires a sh*t-load of documentation, writing, and compiling of letters. But I applied, and now I’m in it to win it (she says with a strained smile). I’m nothing, if not committed. But it does mean that my lofty writing goals are going to become a bit more down-to-earth. Namely, there’s no way I can reach my current word goal, while also putting together a promotion file, keeping up with reviews (something I do professionally, outside the blog), and grading essays. It’s crunch time! And some things are going to have to wait. I’m glad I’m between drafts with project #1, because there’s no way I was going to get any work done. I’m going to keep writing, but I’m going to scale back. Take things slow and steady, rather than rush and try to meet some arbitrary word count (it’s a rough draft, after all, there’s always Camp NaNo in July).

Things may be a bit quiet around here, but I’ll continue to check in from time to time. Wish me luck!

week of welcome, or someone get me another coffee

It’s midway through the first week of classes and I am feeling burned out. The amount of energy required to be upbeat, friendly, and constantly available makes my little introvert heart feel like curling up in bed for a week. I love working with students. I think they’re fun and they keep me fresh and engaged, but there’s a sense of infectious energy that becomes overwhelming after a few days. I almost feel like I’m catching a cold, I feel so tired and worn. I’ll be fine next week, but, for now, it takes all my energy to make myself perky enough to provide a welcoming atmosphere. Mind you, I work with college students. I have no idea how the primary school folks make it work.

Sticking to a chapter a day reading plan for the draft read-through, so that’s something. Also, planning activities for an upcoming library fair, and scheming to find ways to stretch my budget. Fun times.

just another update

Feeling a little uninspired but I’m going to stick to my schedule. Or else… So updates! I have a new employee starting tomorrow, which means I need to get into full #bosslady mode. Which is ironic, as I am the least boss-like person I know, yet I still manage to get myself dragged into leadership roles. Such is life. I can do the thing and do it I will. Just have to be on good behavior. No shenanigans with the troublemakers. I can be serious. If only until new girl catches on to my ploy.

Anywho… writing! It’s happening. I’m nearly done with the latest draft, just 2 more chapters and an epilogue to go. It’s startling how far the story has come. Deep POV FTW. Sometimes it’s hard to get away from the characters, they kind of get stuck in my head and I feel like I’m carrying these moods that have no bearing on real life. #writerproblems 

Progress. Just making progress.

Lifewise… Whole30 is going strong. I’m on day 24 and already looking forward to keeping up my new habits — fewer grains, no dairy, less soy, more veg, and more awareness of sugar. I’ve noticed a real change in my body composition and just feel better all around (PMS drama notwithstanding). I can see this being a thing. I really can.

Oh, and I finally finished Emma (which took me longer than I expected, but distractions), so I’m on to the ever growing pile of books I need to stop checking out from the library.

as the sun peeks through the clouds…

It’s been a quiet month. I’ve been doing a lot of reflecting and meditating, keeping up with my daily journaling, and trying to be more mindful in my everyday living. It’s also been cold! Not frozen tundra cold, but pretty cold for a warm and sunny Miami girl. I always find it a little harder to find the drive to get out and go when it’s cold. I just want to shut down and bundle up. Partly, because my body is already colder than normal, so any drop in the temperature signals the shivers; partly, because the gloomy, gray skies give me the doldrums. However, I’ve made a real effort to stick with my plans for the month. I made my deadline for the draft reading :). I’ve only missed 4 of the now 28 days of yoga. And I’ve managed to find the energy to sort through the things I left at my mom’s place when I first moved out (KonMari to the rescue!). I’m finding new ways to incorporate writing into my day, that will help me continue to push forward with the next draft while allowing me to continue to look after my physical well-being (i.e. step away from the computer and get down with yoga). It’s all coming along.

For now, I’m going to give myself a mini break and read, read, read for pleasure while I prepare my notes for the next 6 rounds of revision (I’ve broken it down, and 6 is the magic number of categories based on my notes).

Ta!   

welcome fall… though the heat is still on

on writing

It’s September! And with it comes the pressing need to get things done before the dark days arrive. Making slow and steady progress with my new writing schedule. I started tracking my word counts sometime in mid-July and have found myself looking forward to writing on the weekends, rather than rushing home to squeeze in a few mediocre pages between dinner, washing up, and bedtime. Since I started tracking, I’ve (re)written a total of 17427 words (the draft now stands at a little over 70k words). There are two and a half more chapters to get through, though I’ve worked past the toughest sections, so the rest should be more manageable. This is the third draft (second major rewrite); I’m going to let it rest a bit and work on some scenes that I need to refine before I try to recruit CPs.

I’ve learned a lot about how I write while working on this draft. Despite all the advice out there, I do believe that we each come to writing in our own way. For me, this means finding what works best for my health and well-being. I’m a fast writer, but if my mind’s not in it, there’s no amount of self-flagellation that will get me to write something worth reading. While there’s something to be said for writing everyday to establish a flow, that method hasn’t worked for me in the last year and a half. I need blocks of time in which to write. I can do that well enough on weekends, but my schedule just doesn’t allow for it on most weekdays anymore (part of the trade-off I made when taking a job with a longer commute but more opportunities for professional growth). Come November, I’ll fast draft (I will NaNo this year); for now, I take the long road.

on reading

A lot of books were read in July. I swept through my bookshelf and got rid of about two bag’s worth of books that I will never read, am just not interested in anymore, or tried a few chapters and didn’t like the style. Among these, were three Georgette Heyers that failed to capture my interest. Given my genre preferences, I really wanted to like Heyer, but after two attempts, I just had to give up. Can’t like them all. I did, however, fall for the new Poldark series, which led me right to the books. So there we are.

on life

New semester, new students, new job roles, lots of stuff to oversee and get done.

I’m on day 20 of a 30 yoga challenge (missed a few days, but I’m back on track now), and trying to get back into my old walking/running habit. My energy has improved somewhat, but there are days when everything just aches and I just want to sleep all day; doing yoga really helps, particularly after sitting at my desk for hours. I haven’t seen any major changes since I started the FitGirls challenge back in April, but I’m definitely more toned and flexible now that I’m concentrating on yoga rather than circuit training.

My hair has also reached a new milestone and is now just grazing the base of my neck… still dull and awful though. I’m seriously considering giving up on this experiment and trimming it back to my usual bob in lieu of a pixie. Ugh, I’m in a style rut and I hate it. I’m going to try a henna dye this weekend to darken it up.

my alter ego

A bit about me… I am a writer, yes, but I am a librarian by day. Why? Because it pays the bills and feeds the kitty. Every so often, folks ask me why I became a librarian, so here’s the story…

I, like many bright-eyed undergrads before me, decided to go to grad school and get a master’s degree in my chosen field–English. What does one do with an English degree you might ask… a lot, actually, but that’s a story for a different day. If you’re like me, you teach freshman comp as a TA and become an adjunct. The life of the adjunct is a cruel and brutal existence, only compounded by the cutthroat battle for tenure endured by hungry PhDs. I chose an alternative route… I got a library degree, stayed in academia, and managed to find a solid job with decent pay and room for growth.

I should like to share some truths and misconceptions about what I do:

  1. Yes, I read a lot. That does not mean that I read on the job. I check out books and read them at home, just like everyone else.
  2. Yes, many library resources are available online. Yes, people do still come to the library for help.
  3. No, I do not shush people. Actually, I’m a radical sort who thinks libraries should meet the needs of the people not the librarians.
  4. Yes, I wear a sweater and glasses. Libraries are cold because it keeps the mold off the books. And I’ve wore glasses long before I ever dreamed of becoming a librarian.
  5. I write a lot on the job. It’s a different beast from my creative writing, but it keeps the wheels going.

wrapping up, July

on life

It’s been a miserably hot month, but I’ve managed to stick to my workout schedule despite the unrelenting heat and humidity. Speaking of miserable heat, a couple of weeks ago I had a thought regarding my lack of energy during the last few months… I was refilling my weekly pill-box and noticed that the bottle of Synthroid was surprisingly warm. Now, it’s been hot year-round, but especially since my last refill. I decided to test my theory by finding a different place to store my meds, and I think it’s panning out, as I’ve started noticing some real changes in my mood and energy levels. I never really gave it any thought when I lived at my mom’s place, since the house was generally cool, but my apartment features wall A/C units that I only run while at home, so the place warms up during the day, especially during the summer months. Given the extreme temps this year, there hasn’t been  a cool day since winter. If the heat altered my meds, it would explain why I’ve been so drained for the last few months. Some days it’s been nearly impossible to work up the desire to do more than the minimum, which has really put a damper on my writing and exercise routines. I’m not entirely back to normal; I feel the way I felt when they were first trying to get my thyroid to normal levels, but I do feel better. Tired rather than bone-weary on most days. I hope this means that my energy be back to normal after a few more weeks, but I’m trudging along for now.

on writing

Day 100 has come and gone and with it two more chapters revised. All in all, some good work this month. Once the words started flowing, the words started flowing. I wanted to get a third chapter finished before the end of July, but that’s likely not going to happen until I can sit at my computer for an all day writing marathon on Saturday.

The book is out and an article I co-wrote with some of my fellow library gals is in pre-pub, so all is well in the world of academia.

on books

I’ve been in a trashy romance sort of mood. After reading the Grisha trilogy, I had a hard time finding anything that really sparked my interest, so I started making my way through the adult manga section of the library and weeding my way through my TBR shelf. I found a few gems and some fun reads, and then I picked up a used copy of Teresa Medeiros’s Yours Until Dawn that I purchased at some long ago library friends’ sale and was instantly hooked. Thus began my foray into romance novel binge reading as I devoured several more of her books. Sometimes I just need some sexy fluff in my life. I’m cool with that.

in flux

I’m in a weird in-between state. My trip was cancelled at the last minute (just as I finished getting my things ready), so what was supposed to be a week away has turned into an ordinary week after all… except, I wasn’t planning on being here, so none of the things I usually do in preparation for the week got done. I didn’t do groceries. I didn’t prepare to edit. I didn’t even fill the gas tank. All day I’ve been out of sorts because I am completely ill-prepared to get things done. I spent the morning just trying to fill in the gaps in my work schedule, since the desk schedule was worked out based on my not being around to handle reference questions. Suddenly, meetings are back on my calendar, and I have no idea what I’m supposed to be doing. It’s a strange feeling, like coming back from a vacation… except not.

I picked up a few essentials this morning, just enough to get by, and read over the chapter I was working on last week to get back in the groove. Really hoping that tomorrow finds me settling back into my usual rhythm.